Sunday, May 04, 2008

Can One Do It All?

I often wonder how my parents did it.

How did they manage to work, raise kids (and go to parent-teacher conferences faithfully), keep a well-maintained yard, grow vegetables in the backyard, cook real food daily, have friends, and keep a clean house. And they did it on a pretty working-middle class income.

This morning I looked at my kitchen. It was a disaster.

And I wonder how is it that I, with a lot more resources than they had (minus the partner currently), can't manage the basics of running a household -- cleaning, cooking, laundry, etc... The work part, I seem to manage just fine.

We all have 24-hours in a day, and that hasn't changed since the 80s.

I've been debating whether or not to hire someone to come in once a week, or every other week, to help with some of those tasks that come with running a household. My dilemma is this -- I do a lot of social justice work, and I kinda feel guilty about the possibility of having someone come in to do housekeeping. I don't want to feel or be labelled (excuse the spelling) bousghie, booshie, however you spell it. Let's just call it puff-puff.

But I realize I am just one person, and I can't do it all. Can any of you weigh in on your thoughts?

A great novel that looks at the dynamics of pre-Civil Rights and post-Civil Rights black family dynamics is Jump at the Sun by Kim McLarin. I think this personal dilemma I'm thinking about resonates with the dilemmas of the characters in that novel.

OK. Weigh in.


Anonymous said...

I've come to the same conclusion. I can't seem to get everything done that I'm supposed to. Between work, exercise, community work, frat, etc., there appears not to be enough time to keep my place tidy. If I don't something soon, I will be buried in dust.

Anonymous said...

If you can afford "help" get it. There's nothing to feel guilty about. I'm a middle-aged, middle income black gay man and I have help. I wouldn't want to be without it.